The Rebels, who play Hart County at 5;30 p.m. today, were hampered when starting center Cassie Anderson and leading scorer Allie Hafley picked up two quick fouls in the first quarter and went to the bench. However, the bench play of the Rebels, which had produced all year, failed to do the same against Henry Clay.
"We didn't get anything out of our bench, and that was disappointing," the Boyle coach said. "They have really been playing well, but when Cassie got in foul trouble tonight, we didn't get any help."
Henry Clay head coach Scott Cromwell was pleased with the way his team hit the boards in the first half.
"We did a lot of nice things in the first half," Cromwell said. "We crashed the boards hard and were able to get a lot of points."
Anderson scores 16 in second half
The return of Anderson allowed Boyle to trim the lead to 12 points on several occasions during the second half. She scored 18 of her game-high 19 points during the final 16 minutes of play
"She really went to war in the second half and played the way she is capable of playing," Mason added. "She did a nice job on the boards and scored when she had the opportunity."
Boyle's defense began to swarm to the ball and was more aggressive.
"If we played the first half the way we played during the second, it would have been a much more competitive game," Mason said. "We didn't quit and showed a lot of heart coming back."
"They cut the lead to 12 and were in position to get closer, but they never did hit the key shot to put them over the top," Cromwell, who at one time in the second half replaced his five starters with five substitutes, said.
"We talked at the half about coming out in the second half and putting them away, but we could never get in the comfort zone.
"The key for us is pace. We want a fast game to wear out our opposition. Boyle was much more aggressive and we started to get sloppy. I can't stand that type of play, and I thought five new players might energize us. It wasn't until late in the game when we started breaking their press that I began to feel good about the win."
Boyle was ice cold, no matter where the Rebels shot the ball from. They connected on only 22 of 71 attempts from the field (31 percent), nine of 23 from the charity stripe and managed to hit just six of 28 tries from beyond the 3-point arc.
The Rebels managed to trim the rebounding margin to 54-48 as Ashley Chalk pulled down 10 missed shots. Boyle committed 23 turnovers compared to 26 for Henry Clay - 21 of which occurred in the second half.